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Potato Safety: Unwrapped Potatoes That Were Not Fully Cooked

Q:

I placed some unwrapped Russet potatoes and sweet potatoes in the oven to roast. During the roasting process the oven failed and when I removed the potatoes they were only slightly cooked. My guests continued the process and finished cooking them in the microwave. We do not know at what point the oven failed in the process. Do we have any health concerns? The potatoes were eaten by my guests? I know I have read about food poisoning/botulism from improperly prepared potatoes.

A:

That’s a good question. Normally I would say no problem, because the time duration (same evening, same event) was relatively short. The only thing I caution anyone that has this happen to them to consider… were the potatoes prepared in a way that would not introduce any foreign substance? For example, if rolled in melted butter and pieces of garlic I would discard just because of the introduction of a dairy product. Were the potatoes pierced with a fork and was the fork clean of any other protein or dairy?

I apologize for not getting back to you quicker, but I am guessing none of the guests suffered any stomach discomfort.